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Antibiotic Resistance Study Finds Differences between Member States

17 May 2013

EU - The European Union Summary Report on antimicrobial resistance in zoonotic and indicator bacteria from humans, animals and food in 2011 from EFSA and ECDC has found some significant national trends in resistance levels in isolates from animals and food. Among Salmonella isolates, more decreasing than increasing trends were found, whereas in the case of Campylobacter, significant national trends were mostly increasing. The study also looked at selected E.coli isolates and MRSA.

The antimicrobial resistance data among zoonotic and indicator bacteria in 2011, submitted by 26 European Union Member States, were jointly analysed by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). Data covered resistance in zoonotic Salmonella and Campylobacter isolates from humans, food and animals, and in indicator Escherichia coli and enterococci isolates from animals and food. Data on methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in animals and food were also presented.

Resistance in isolates from humans were mainly interpreted using clinical breakpoints, while animal and food isolate resistance was interpreted using epidemiological cut-off values.

Resistance was commonly found in isolates from humans, animals and food, although disparities in resistance were frequently observed between Member States.

High resistance levels were recorded to ampicillin, tetracyclines and sulphonamides in Salmonella isolates from humans, while resistance to third-generation cephalosporins and fluoroquinolones remained low.

In Salmonella and indicator Escherichia coli isolates from chickens, pigs, cattle and meat thereof, resistance to ampicillin, tetracyclines and sulphonamides was also commonly detected, while resistance to third-generation cephalosporins was low.

Moderate to high resistance to quinolones/fluoroquinolones was observed in Salmonella isolates from turkeys, chickens and broiler meat.

In Campylobacter isolates from human cases, resistance to ampicillin, ciprofloxacin, nalidixic acid and tetracyclines was high, while resistance to erythromycin was low to moderate.

High resistance to ciprofloxacin, nalidixic acid and tetracyclines was observed in Campylobacter isolates from chickens, broiler meat, pigs and cattle, whereas much lower levels were observed for erythromycin and gentamicin.

Among the indicator enterococci isolates from animals and food, resistance to tetracyclines and erythromycin was commonly detected.

The report also presents for the first time results on multi-resistance and co-resistance to critically important antimicrobials in both human and animal isolates. Very few isolates from animals were co-resistant to critically important antimicrobials.

Further Reading

You can view the full report (396 pages; 19.8MB) by clicking here.

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